Ukrainians are now seriously studying tactical medicine – Oksana Zaborovech, 23, wants to stay away from the front | Foreign countries

Ukrainians are now seriously studying tactical medicine Oksana Zaborovech

KIEV A group of students put on gas masks and protective suits in the courtyard of the Kyiv Medical University. The teacher shouts instructions. A rehearsal for a possible chemical attack is about to begin.

Sixth year student Oksana Zaborovetsch23, explains how important it is to learn tactical medicine, i.e. working in surprising and dangerous situations.

– War is one of the most difficult things in our lives, because you never know what to expect, says Zaborovetš, taking off his protective suit at the same time.

At first he was afraid, but now war is everyday.

– This is the third year of war, and it may seem strange, but I’m used to air raids and the fact that war is present.

Many other fellow students think so too. When the lecture is interrupted by an air raid, the studies continue in the bomb shelter.

– All the necessary equipment has been acquired there so that we can study there for long periods of time, he says Nazar Ihnatenko20.

Oksana Zaboroveč’s study time has included first the corona period and then the war.

– We have studied remotely during the pandemic, so we know that studying is possible even in strange circumstances, he states.

Constant stress and uncertainty

The students say that they have gotten used to the war, even though it has a big impact on their ability to cope.

According to the study war causes constant stress and uncertainty about the future for Ukrainian students. The academic year has sometimes also been delayed to stretch into the summer, in which case the heating costs are lower. In addition, every fifth higher education institution in Ukraine is damagedt or destroyed during the Russian invasion.

Despite the war, young Ukrainians want to study. Last academic year 2022–2023 1.1 million students applied to Ukrainian higher education institutions. In the previous school year before the start of the war, the number was only slightly higher, 1.3 million.

Student: “I don’t want to be on the front line”

Many medical students have already worked on the front line or later plan to go help near the front line. Oksana Zaboroveč doesn’t breathe at the front.

– Honestly, I don’t want to be on the front line, even if it could be morally right. I can also help by working in Kyiv, says Zaborovetš.

He wants to see the world sometime, but says he understands the importance of the work he does.

Zaborovech believes that the new generation can build a new Ukraine.

– Young people like me can influence the future of our country. I want to be building it.

Zaboroveč is not alone with his thoughts. Also a third year student Albyna Chopik20, plans to stay in Ukraine.

He describes studying in the middle of the war like this: difficult, interesting and a little scary.

You can see Čopik’s interview in the video below:

Čopik has been volunteering at the front and near the occupied areas, as he belongs to an aid organization.

– The hardest part was hearing people’s stories about the occupation and seeing their conditions, says Čopik.

Many told about the suffering they experienced.

– You yourself sit at the reception desk and listen, try to say something and somehow make him feel better. Holding hands has helped, says Čopik.

Čopik’s future dream is to work as a pediatrician.

– Hopefully in a good, clean hospital where I can make people healthier and happier.

Men are not allowed to travel abroad

Some Ukrainian students have gone abroad to continue their studies, but it is not possible for men over 18 years old. According to wartime laws, men between the ages of 18 and 60 are not allowed to leave Ukraine without special permission from the authorities.

– I feel that I am losing some of my opportunities and rights, but I understand why the travel ban has now been imposed, says Nazar Ihnatenko.

– Without it, our country would lose too many people.

Initially, students already enrolled in foreign universities were exempted from the rule. The situation changed when the border guards noticed falsified by students documents to flee the country. This has also led to the fact that students who are already abroad do not want to return, because they cannot travel back to their country of study.

Some boys under the age of 18, on the other hand, went abroad to study before the law applied to them.

Ihnatenko also plans to travel sometime.

– My dream would be to visit the Munich football stadium in Germany someday. But now I can’t do that. Maybe later, he says.

You can see Ihnatenko’s interview in the video below:

Men’s interest in studying increased significantly

Currently, university students are exempt from the army, but these rules may change if Ukraine needs more men to the front.

For some, studying has also become a way to avoid being at the front. Comparing the gender distribution of universities the research team noticedthat in the academic year 2022–2023 there were 82 percent more male students than the previous year.

Students are also flowing back to Ukraine. When Russia attacked in February 2022, Ukraine was more than 80,000 international student. A large part fled and returned to their homeland, but now some have returned. In particular, Indian medical students have returned to continue their studies despite the war.